Jill Paice, John Treacy Egan and Judith Blazer will lead the cast of Paper Mill Playhouse’s Lend Me a Tenor. Directed by Don Stephenson, the Ken Ludwig comedy will run at the Millburn, NJ theater February 13 through March 10, with an official opening night set for February 17.
Joining Paice as Maggie, Egan as Tito and Blazer as Maria, the comedy will also star Donna English (Nice Work If You Can Get It) as Diana, Nancy Johnston (Elf) as Julia, David Josefsberg (The Wedding Singer) as Max, Michael Kostroff (TV's The Wire) as Saunders and Mark Price (Mary Poppins) as Bellhop.
Lend Me a Tenor tells the story of renowned tenor Tito Merelli, known to his fans as "Il Stupendo," who is scheduled to sing the lead in the opera Otello. However, the star arrives late after a misunderstanding with his wife, and through a hilarious series of mishaps, is given a double dose of tranquilizers and passes out. In an attempt to ensure the show goes on, general manager Saunders persuades opera house employee Max to get into Merelli's costume and fool the audience into thinking he's "Il Stupendo." An evening of mistaken identity, farcical plot twists, double entendres and musical mayhem follows.
Paice has appeared on Broadway in The 39 Steps, Curtains and The Woman in White. She was set to lead Broadway's Rebecca before the production was derailed. Egan appeared on Broadway in Sister Act, The Little Mermaid, The Producers, Jekyll & Hyde and Bye Bye Birdie. Blazer's Broadway credits include Lovemusik, 45 Seconds from Broadway, Titanic, Me and My Girl and A Change in the Heir.
Lend Me a Tenor originally opened on Broadway on March 2, 1989 at the Royale Theatre and ran for 476 performances. Directed by Jerry Zaks, the production starred Philip Bosco, Victor Garber, Ron Holgate, Tovah Feldshuh, Caroline Lagerfelt, Jane Connell, J. Smith-Cameron and Jeff Brooks. The show earned Tony Awards for Best Actor and Best Director. A 2010 Broadway revival was directed by Stanley Tucci and starred Anthony LaPaglia, Jay Klaitz, Justin Bartha, Jan Maxwell, Mary Catherine Garrison, Jennifer Laura Thompson, and husband and wife couple Tony Shalhoub and Brooke Adamsbegan. The revival ran at the Music Box Theatre and received three Tony nominations.